Tuesday, March 16, 2021

Taking a DNA Test While Pregnant?

 

Taking a DNA Test While Pregnant?

DNA testing is done for various purposes. You might want to know about your family history and ancestry. Or maybe you want to learn about any genetic illness. However, if you are pregnant and have a question about the baby's paternity, should you go for a DNA test?


Though you have an option for a postpartum paternity test, you can also conduct a DNA test while you are pregnant. But, you have to be mindful while going for a DNA test. This article will determine whether it is safe to take a test while pregnant and what are the safest options. 


Things You Need To Know When Taking a DNA Test While Pregnant

First thing first, select a reliable and authentic genetic testing service. Each service differs in its testing and results, so be careful while selecting the one. 


Now, let's read what you should consider while taking a DNA test when you are pregnant.


Whose DNA Should Be Tested?

Generally, DNA in the skin cells and DNA in the blood cells are the same. It wouldn't affect the report whether the collecting method used is via blood or cheek swab. However, things become complex when you take a DNA sample from a pregnant woman.


The DNA of a person remains the same throughout their life, which has a unique mixture of both mother and father's genes. This is what questions what type of DNA test is safe to be conducted on a pregnant woman.

  

The fetus and mother share everything from nutrients to waste. If the blood sample is collected, the test will not differentiate between fetus DNA and mother's DNA. Therefore, pregnant women should avoid DNA testing that uses blood samples. 


Perform Saliva or Cheek Swab DNA test?

A cheek swab test won't affect the genetic results due to pregnancy. Many DNA test kits are available in the market, allowing pregnant women to take a DNA test at home. The cheek swab test is simple and easy compared to the saliva test. 


Cheek swab does come with its complications. Sometimes, the sample provided is smaller in amount, which is insufficient to provide the proper results. So, the collection process must be performed properly. 


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Why a Need to Avoid Blood-Based DNA tests?

As mentioned above, a blood-based DNA test can complicate the report due to the genetic material of the fetus present in the mother's blood. A usable DNA is needed to perform accurate and precise results. 


The interesting fact is the genetic material of the fetus found in the bloodstream of the mother is very useful. It is often utilized in non-invasive prenatal screening and testing to determine paternity. Nevertheless, the techniques do have limitations.


What Paternity Tests Should Pregnant Women Consider?

The DNA testing done to determine paternity is significantly different from DNA-tests performed at home. Postpartum paternity tests are considered the safest option for a pregnant woman. However, if you want to take a DNA test while pregnant, you can consider the below-mentioned options:


Amniocentesis: The test takes an amniotic fluid sample present in the uterus. The collected DNA is then compared with the DNA of the father. However, it does contain the chance of miscarriage; that's why a pregnant woman should do it within twenty weeks of pregnancy. 


Non-invasive Prenatal Paternity: The test collects blood from the alleged mother and father and creates a genetic profile. It will then compare the result with fetal cells present in the bloodstream of the mother to that of the father's. The test should be done after eight weeks of pregnancy and is 99 per cent accurate.


Chorionic Villus Sampling: Chorionic villi is a small tissue attached to the uterus wall. The collected DNA of the mother is compared with the father. However, there is also a danger of miscarriage in this test. 


Final Thoughts

DNA testing for pregnant women should be performed carefully and at a reliable DNA center as it involves the risk of life to both the baby and the mother. Try to go for no-blood testing; thus, it will not be accurate in this case. 


The best way to determine the paternity is via a cheek swab, which doesn't harm the child and provides accurate results. So, if you are pregnant and would like to get a DNA test, look for safe options for your child or go for a postpartum paternity test. 


ALSO READ: A GUIDE TO LIVING WITH SLEEP APNOEA

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